Milo is Six Today! / by Leslie

Six years ago I was in a hospital room marveling over a new little person in the world. He looked  a little bit like he does today, but I had no idea what kind of boy he would grow up to be. I believe we become mothers the moment we decide to have children, some even before that, but when your child is born, when he moves from inside of you to out in the world, it is a wonder and something to be truly grateful for. (You can read about Milo's birth if you want all those magical details.)

Since my first post about him, to this one 43 posts later, I have written about him growing up and I have discovered what kind of a boy he is. Full of compassion and empathy, curious and hungry for knowledge about how things work, he is loved by all and I am frequently told what a special boy he is by his teachers. I am so proud every single time.

He is taking karate, and is almost done kindergarten. He can read and write. I was flipping through his notebook at school and he has drawn so many beautiful pictures and written stories about them. One was a boy holding flowers and it said "For my Mom." It made me smile to find it. It's amazing how far he has come with reading and writing. He's so smart and he works so hard.

He's just a good kid. He's kind, gentle and funny. I love him so much. We cuddle in bed and his legs and arms are getting so long. He puts his hand on my cheek and asks me if my heart is melting. I'd do anything for him.

The last three days we have been partying like six years olds. Saturday was a trip to the Bronx Zoo and we walked around for six hours seeing everything we could see; seals, tigers (who we didn't see very well because they were sleeping), polar bears, brown bears, lions, giraffes, gorillas, flamingos, elephants on the Asia Monorail and the Butterfly tent. We ran to the Carousel at the end of the day to make sure we made it before it closed.

Sunday started with balloons on his chair and presents to open from us. A Magic kit, two Disney movies (Alladin and Lady & the Tramp), two books (Art & Max and Blackout) and some Lego. Later we went to his cousin's house and he swam in the pool all afternoon with his brother and Dad. He is so confident in the pool now, and even though he is wearing a swimming vest, I can tell he is swimming so much better. We had ice cream cake and presents from the family, more Lego and an Xbox Kinect. Lucky kid, what a fun day.

Today was his real birthday and Quinn and I brought cupcakes into his school to share with his classmates and I read one of his new books to them. He came home and we set up the Xbox and danced, played racketball and went white water rafting for 2 hours. He got a few more presents; MORE Lego, a vintage style Pinochio puzzle, a Slips & Ladders game and red velvet cupcakes (that I bought because I had NO TIME to make them).

I am TIRED! (Mostly I am tired because we started the birthday shenanigans after spending two nights in New York City visiting with friends, driving in twice. More on that soon.)

So, I write this without much thought or time. In 15 minutes I have to go read my boys a bedtime story. I haven't posted for almost a week because I've been so busy just living life. Tomorrow I will get back to my blog, my painting class and my planning for the future, but for now I am fully enjoying every moment of my friend's successes, real life dinners with bloggers, a night in the city with my husband, 5 hour visits with old friends from Canada and my boy's birthday. You have to grab the opportunities when they come, make the most of them, and savor every single moment of our good lives. Our children grow up too fast and before we know it they are not six, but sixteen, and they don't want to go to the Zoo anymore.

In the grocery store I was looking through birthday cards for Milo and somehow I ended up in the grown-up son section. The cards wistfully looked back at when adult sons had been little and it was weird. I had two thoughts: 1. I should buy these for the future because they are decently designed and it's hard to find good cards sometimes and 2. I am scared of the times when I look back at these days wistfully. I don't want to wish that I had spent more time playing Xbox, or reading books. I want to do it all now, while I can. So when my blog goes quiet for a week, forgive me and imagine me simply hanging out with my family and enjoying my life. I'll get back to work soon enough.